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Ghost Canyon

The Last Time I Committed Suicide [Blu-ray]
(Keanu Reeves, Thomas Jane, Adrien Brody, Claire Forlani, Gretchen Mol, et al / Blu-ray / R / (1997) 2021 / MVD Visual)

Overview: In the idyllic post-war 1950s, young men across the country were aspiring to achieve the American dream of marriage, family and stability. But others longed for something different.

Meet Neal Cassady (Thomas Jane, The Mist). He has got a poets soul, a dreamers heart and a choice to make. Caught between the allure of a drifters life on the road and the security of a traditional home, Neal must decide which future he most desires.

From writer and director Stephen Kay (Yellowstone, Get Carter) and also starring Keanu Reeves (John Wick), Claire Forlani (Mallrats), Adrien Brody (The Pianist), Marg Helgenberger (Species), Amy Smart (The Butterfly Effect), Lucinda Jenney (Rain Man) and Gretchen Mol (3:10 to Yuma), The Last Time I Committed Suicide is the unforgettable story of love, friendship and discovering how to stay a beat ahead of the crowd.

Blu-ray Verdict: One of the most surprising things in The Last Time I Committed Suicide is the whole part about Neal Cassady’s thoughts about living the ideal American life (a nuclear family and a house surrounded by a white picket fence).

Cassady was one of the major people in the Beat generation, which rejected the Leave It to Beaver image of life. If, in fact, Cassady thought about having this kind of life, then it goes to show his own conflicts, even beyond the main plot in this movie.

But I digress. I think that the movie did a good job looking at Neal Cassady (Thomas Jane). He and Jack Kerouac remain two of the most important figures of the 20th century.

Also starring Keanu Reeves, Marg Helgenberger and Gretchen Mol, and, well, just take a look at that one scene of her alone! Phew! And if you honestly cannot recall it, or never saw it, you will instantly know which scene it is when it comes on screen, trust me!

Thus, and taking everything noted above with a pinch of salt, this film is a perfect evocation of Neal Cassady, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg and the times that they lived in. It is the way they and other members of the Beat Generation lived.

Furthermore, the script by Stephen Kay is based on a letter that Neal Cassady wrote to Allen Ginsberg about an adventure he had with a girl called Cherry Mary.

Again, Jane gives an outstanding performance as Neal, and Gretchen Mol is a scene-stealer as Cherry Mary. And, if it needs revealing again, the cast is rounded out with strong supporting turns by Claire Forlani, Keanu Reeves (surprise, surprise!), and Adrien Brody.

The direction, soundtrack, costumes, and cinematography all conspire to put you back in time and we get to see, clearly, that Stephen Kay is an assured director with just the right touch. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:

High Definition (1080p) presentation of the main feature in 1.78:1 aspect ratio
Audio: LPCM 2.0 Stereo
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
Original Theatrical Trailer

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